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Monday, 23 September 2019

WHEN FULL LVT HAS BEEN ACHIEVED, WILL WE STILL NEED SOCIAL HOUSING? 

We don’t have ‘social food’ or ‘social clothing’ thanks goodness! Yet once there were Mao’s hordes of blue-denim clad Chinese. Not any more. We wear the clothes we fancy (very cheap because of the self-same hordes) and have such food choices that obesity is our main problem. I’d like to make the case that Social Housing should go the way of the blue denim uniform. In the post-LVT era, houses will be so cheap, so plentiful and yes, so good that state-organised house-building and renting will seem no more than an ancient curiosity.   


No more social housing? Everyone choosing and buying or renting their own preferred housing. That’s such an odd idea for us to take in now. So it’s not surprising that current wisdom can only conceive of a world where Big Brother in one form or another organises housing for the ‘less-well-off’. Consider these recent papers from wise and sensible commentators:

Friday, 23 August 2019

AS THE 1ST BEST STEP TOWARDS LVT — TRANSFORM COUNCIL TAX INTO 

A TAX ON THE VALUE OF THE PROPERTY (PVT)?


A number of very sincere, well-read, properly thought out Reformers believe that switching Council Tax to LVT, or to its almost-nearly-there version Property Value Tax (PVT) is the best, and maybe the only way out of the Housing Crisis. I list these CT-to-LVT advocates at the end of this article.

Why the switch is attractive to many LVT advocates:  CT is levied on every residential property in all parts of the UK. Despite changes from Rates through Poll Tax and then back to the banded Council Tax, it seems to be accepted as fairish (ref survey). It is also a fairly large revenue source for governments. And since a large chunk of a house price is land value it is close to being LVT already (or is it? This seems like a topic that needs further investigation).

But there are problems with this rosy scenario.

Friday, 12 July 2019

AFTER 100 YEARS, STILL NO IMPLEMENTATION OF L V T.

WAS IT ALL THE FAULT OF HENRY GEORGE?

Henry George was not an academic, or a qualified economist. He was a hugely successful campaigner. But was he toosuccessful?
That is what Michael Hudson, one of my great heroes railing against the false theories of mainstream economics (you know, the ones who ‘didn’t see it — the Great Financial Crash of 2008 — coming). And yet he blames Henry George for being too narrowly focussed, too unwilling to collaborate with other reformers, for the failure to implement LVT.
Read Hudson’s paper — it is a very easy read — and make your own mind up. Was Henry George and the well-funded Georgists who followed him the reason why LVT is always rejected and his followers treated as fanatics?

Henry George's Political Critics Michael HudsonFirst published: 26 February 2008
To access the paper FOR FREE click on:


American Journal of Economics and Sociology, 

LAND FOR THE MANY (not the few)

THE LATEST BRAVE ATTEMPT BY THE LABOUR PARTY

TO CURB THE PARASITE (rentier) ECONOMY


https://labour.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2019/06/12081_19-Land-for-the-Many.pdf
  

Only ref to LVT is to replace business rates (UBR). Otherwise avoids the topic altogether. Is this an example of shrewd political calculation? Dodge the smearing headlines in the Daily Mail (inspired by Conservative Central Office of course!) that “Corbyn is going to inflict the dreaded ‘Garden Tax’”. So stupid are the Mail hacks, that they think the tax will be levied on a per square foot basis depending on garden size! 

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-7145233/Essex-resort-boasts-biggest-gardens-Britain.html

Poor George! 

He discovers that some of his fellow journalists of our free press say nasty false things!

There’s been a recent Report prepared for the Labour Party called Land for the Many, not the Few.  It is very good, makes a serious and sensible attempt, in part, to see how government could take back the value in land under houses and ensure that homes for the many become cheap enough for the many to buy (or rent). 

I’ll look at some of the ideas in this report in future postings, but here I’m looking at the horrible, but totally predictable way the right-wing press reacted to it. Amusingly, or maybe , sadly George Monbiot, one of the authors of the Report just did not see the ferocity and mendacity of the attacks his Report was about to be subject to.
Read on… 

Friday, 22 March 2019

THREE GREAT IDEAS FROM A REAL EXPERT IN THE HOUSING

Why can’t you afford a home?Is the provocative title of new book by a genuine expert Josh Ryan-Collins. 

He really does understand that building more houses is not the answer. It is the Land market and the way Banks can create unlimited credit for mortgages that drive up prices, and make housing an ‘investment’ good.

Fine as far as it goes! But does he suggest a remedy?

Yes indeed, not ONE fix, but three of them
Control the Banks
Tax Land Values
Public Ownership of Land
Let’s look more closely at how far Josh’s ideas will Fix the Housing Market (hint: sadly not very)

Tuesday, 29 January 2019

SOMEOME ELSE WHO UNDERSTAND FIXING LAND PRICES IS THE SOLUTION TO THE HOUSING CRISIS

 ANOTHER  (fairly) BRILLIANT IDEA TO CAPTURE LANDVALUES 

LAND IS NOW HALF OF OUR WEALTH!

Andrew Parvin points out the ‘irony’ of Affordable Housing, when what’s really driving up prices is the land cost. The graph above shows what’s happened.  So far so brilliant, but his solution is for Local Authorities (Councils) to acquire land, or use their own land and the LEASE it for housing at much reduced ‘affordable’ cost.

The catch is that only social housing applicants would qualify, and they would be selected, somehow, perhaps by a points system, and be hedged in by strict regulations when letting or selling the resultant house.

What a shame he couldn’t go the whole hog and say we need to get rid of this category of social/affordable housing altogether!  We know how, don’t we? Full value LVT — to be fair Parvin does give a mention for Henry George.